New York, NY- After much deliberation and discussion, the World Health Organization (WHO) has officially added “bless their heart” as an ICD-10 diagnosis code. A WHO spokesperson was reached to comment on the newest ICD-10 code.
“Well, we felt it was inevitable that this would eventually be recognized as a diagnosis. We think that this code will be heavily used in the south east United States. Southerners like to use this phrase often and insomuch that it has a dual meaning! Of course, we appropriately gave a separate diagnosis code to reflect that. For instance, instead of assigning a patient a diagnosis of ‘disorientation, unspecified’; R41.0, we can now use ‘bless their heart’ which is a new diagnosis code. It works great when we did a chart review and the physician used it to describe a patient who was disorientated. The physician put “Diagnosis 2: bless her heart; secondary to delirium…”
When discussing this further with Dr. Al Koholik, a psychiatrist, he stated that “I think this new diagnosis code is ground breaking! Especially in patients of mine that are suffering from grief in the form of loss of a loved one or dealing with adversity. Too often I find myself using F43.20; adjustment disorder, unspecified… I just find that it is not doing my patients justice! By using “bless their heart” as a specific diagnosis code, both my colleagues and I understand the patient’s struggles.
We predict that with a breakthrough such as this; having a disease that has duality and two diagnosis codes, will improve patient care.